I wrote a review soon after seeing it but didn’t go into the minutia as only fans would likely be interested. The producer mentioned that special software has been developed to allow for the massive battle scenes. Instead of the orcs running like ants …each individual is autonomous (spell check please) and fights when confronted. It even differentiates between trees and other obstacles , amazing. They were yet to add additional coloring , sound and special effects of course but what I saw impressed me.

There is an exciting scene where the black riders chase the hobbits on to a barge. Frodo jumps on to it just before the black riders overtake him and then the riders head back to travel many miles to the next bridge to catch up with them( this is before Bree of course). I can’t recall if that scene was in the book though. At the beginning when Frodo greets Gandalf there is a shot of the shire with the massive party tree and in the next scene they are at Bag End checking out the ring. There are 2 portraits on the wall above the fireplace 1 male (smoking) and 1 female. Frodo’s parents I presume. McKellen is spot on as the wizard and Wood convincing as Frodo. When they encounter the black riders on the road they have just picked some mushrooms and Frodo senses something/someone on the road ahead. As they hide under the tree off the road the black rider stops and starts sniffing and the hobbits look terrified. The scene has no music but is chilling and true to the book.

The snow scene is where the fellowship are trying to avoid Moria. Frodo for some reason has dropped the ring ; perhaps he has slipped it’s not clear in the footage shown but Borimir picks it up and looks through it. He mutters something like ”how can such a small thing cause so much trouble”(not an exact quote). Sean Bean is very good as is Legolas but I thought the elf would be more lightly built to ‘skip over snow’ and such like. This Legolas looks very strong but many fans may see him that way I guess. He was still very good. The scene at Orthanc with Saruman took my breath away.

The strongly built orc looks fantastic and I can’t wait to see them again. Lee obviously delights in his role and from what I’ve read he has waited a lifetime to play this part. Maybe he will steal a few scenes from McKellan from what I saw. It looked like it had just emerged from an egg or cuckcoon…it’s not really clear where it came from but it was naked and steaming hence the assumption that it had just been born and so life like I’m not suprised the producers wanted to show it off. Lee booms out “Whom do you serve?”, “The white hand of Saruman!” it replies in a hideous voice. I think you will be impressed with these huge orcs that can run in the sun. I’ll try and remember more details and send them to you but hopefully they will release this or similar footage so the real fans can see it. Of the 50 people I saw this with I’m sure only a few were fans and it’s sad that someone can see this preview who doesn’t really have empathy with the material. Well lets hope it’s not too long before everybody gets a look in.

Cheers , Ozscot